Driving for Success Through Citizenship Behaviors
There is no doubt that employee’s performance and engagement are linked to the productivity of a company. However, as every experience is unique, it’s extremely difficult to create a recipe for improve employee’s performance. In this short article we will tackle the issue by providing useful definitions and a list of best practices to take into account.
What is The Definition of Employee Performance?
Employee´s performance is about how an employee accomplishes his job related activities. Were those activities well executed, or poorly done? That would be the main question. Performance reviews are usually done on semi-annual or annual basis, in order to make recommendations for improve employee´s performance in certain areas.
How Are Work Performance and Engagement Linked to Each Other?
The easiest way to answer this question is to define what is an engaged employee. It’s a worker who is focused, takes initiative, is flexible and contributes to the overall company objectives. Hopefully, he or she also finds his job pleasant and enjoys it as much as possible. From an organizational point of view, it’s simple to understand that engaged employees perform better than non-engaged ones.
According to a Manpower study only one in 10 employees define success at work as high performance and productivity, 45 percent of respondents ranked work/life balance as their number one career aspiration, and the top definition of workplace success is enjoyment/happiness.
“Talent shortages for in-demand skills persist and have caused HR departments worldwide to rethink how they develop and motivate individuals to meet performance goals. To attract and retain top talent, organizations must make development a priority and enable their leaders to mentor employees to expand their skills, capabilities and experience.”
Mara Swan, global leader of Right Management and executive vice president of ManpowerGroup
It seems that organizations have a difficult mission to accomplish: to drive a better performance through engaged employees – while attending the company’s overall objectives.
The Individual Path: Crafting Citizenship Behaviors
The concept of citizenship behaviors may be useful in this scenario. It refers to the employee’s will of excel his performance in ways that contribute to the project’s success. It’s about going beyond the expected assignments: helping other co-workers, volunteering, innovating, maybe working extra hours if the situation deems it necessary.
To achieve this level of engagement is a delicate task. An employee should feel motivated to go the extra mile, not pressured. To feel it as an obligation may lead to undesired consequences like stress and frustration which can eventually lead to burn-out and overall fatigue.
Citizenship behaviors can be slowly crafted in order to respect every employee’s unique personality. If an employee has great hard skills but it’s shy and quiet, maybe there is no need to overload him with lots of unnecessary meetings; but rather giving him the tools to be the best in his field. Citizenship crafting is based on the notion that an employee can shape his job in order to meet (and even exceed) the expectations while being consistent with his strengths. Careful consideration of the employee’s soft skills can help. All this should lead to a higher engagement level and therefore to a better performance.
The collective path: reminding the basics
How to improve employee performance at work?
As previously mentioned, there is no magical recipe, but there are proven ways to improve employee performance and engagement. Once these skills are met, it’s easier to work with the citizenship behavior approach. The basics are no more (and no less) than the following:
- Investigating underperformance
- Promoting communication
- Giving feedback
- Setting expectations
- Good workspace
To sum up we have prepared a best practices infographic to keep in mind the basic tips to improve employee performance and engagement. Once a company walks the collective path it can start to approach the individual path, by crafting citizenship behaviors.
What do you think about this issue? Let us know in the comments.